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Contact: Steven Schultz
Princeton University, Engineering School

Air Laser

Caption: Researchers at Princeton University developed a technique for generating a laser beam out of nothing but air. They focus a pump laser on a distant point in the air and another laser beam comes back. The image shows a pulse of infra-red light from this "air laser." The center region represents the highest intensity; the outer areas have lower intensity light. The technique could be used for sensing minute quantities of gas in the air from a distance.

Credit: Image courtesy Arthur Dogariu, Princeton University

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Related news release: 'Air laser' may sniff bombs, pollutants from a distance

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